Blade Runner

Blade Runner ★★★★

Got the privilege to see Blade Runner on the big screen, and on my second viewing of the film a few thoughts crossed my mind:

1.) Hot damn this could’ve been the greatest silent film of all time if Ridely Scott felt like it. It’s weird that I’m enjoying this film the most when nothing is happening. The silent film treatment would’ve axed Harrison Ford’s impersonation of a gay dude so I see nothing but positives. Ridley Scott has five versions of this film floating so why not make a sixth?

2.) I remember Vangelis’ score being fantastic the first viewing, but holy shit this may be the best score I’ve ever seen. It completely elevated what could be stale acting and contributes to creating the universe of Blade Runner just as much as game changing visual style. “Memories of Green” can make a grown man cry even without the context of the scene accompanying it.

3.) I swear to God if Blade Runner 2049 removes the Noir influence from the original for some CGI action nonsense I’ll walk out. Blade Runner works best as a futuristic homage to the film noir flicks of the 50’s and  does so with its patient approach in presenting the setting and its use of shadows. I do not want to see the sun ever in the Blade Runner universe don’t fuck this up Charlie.

4.) The action in Blade Runner is... bad? Every action scene with Deckard vs A replicant feels incredibly awkward, acting and totally. The tone of Blade Runner feels consistent throughout, which isn’t always bad, as the tone is what makes the film stand out all these years later. Yet this patient tone leaves the action scenes with zero sense of urgency, especially in the final showdown.

5.) The ‘sex’ scene between Deckard and Rachael oh god it’s worse than I remembered. The only way I can see this scene being worth salvaging is if it’s a commentary of the human vs machine relationships of society. Deckard selfishly uses Rachael as a machine in that scene to satisfy his human pleasures, and Rachael follows and repeats his commands. But because Ridley got high and had leftover unicorn footage that commentary is rendered useless. And no, “the sex scene is awkward because they’re both robots” is not a good enough excuse.

6.) Game Theory: Ridley Scott switched up the ending in the Final Cut to fuck with Harrison Ford. I can imagine Scott calling Ford and saying some sly comment like “Ayyyyy now you’re robotic acting makes sense u pouty slut.”

7.) Right before the final sequence in the Deckard vs Roy showdown, there is a brief shot where it looks like Roy is holding the dove like a corn dog. It made me audibly laugh in the theater and I got a dirty look.

In conclusion, Blade Runner is one of those films where I understand its classic and overrated labels, and fall somewhere in the middle. Blade Runner could stand on its own with only cinematography, mise en scene, and soundtrack, but the other factors that go into the film get in their own way too much for Blade Runner to be a huge favorite of mine. Blade Runner is a strange film to adapt, because I can imagine so many areas that can be improved on, yet I don’t think there’s any way you can touch the damn near visual perfection of the universe and do it justice.

Fingers crossed.

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